Hello everyone and welcome to GopherHaul
In each episode we discuss lawn care industry issues.
We also Talk about different tips and tricks to improve your lawn care business
This show’s goal is to get you excited about running your business
and excited about life.
If you haven’t started your own business yet, what are you waiting for?
To paraphrase Warren Miller, If you don’t start your business this year,
You’ll be at least one year older when you do.
So get started today!
In this episode we are going to be talking about:
Lee, the winner of our help a veteran marketing campaign
He also happens to run a bikini lawn care service
We are going to see new ways to distribute flyers from your vehicle
What’s the biggest trend emerging in the lawn care industry?
Its going electric, we will learn more about that
A new lawn care business owner wrote us to figure out why he hasn’t been able to get enough new customers
We’ll find out why and these reasons will help your business too.
We are also going to meet an entrepreneur who manufactures electric powered mowers
plus much much more
Now Let’s get to work!
Do you like to read?
Well as a business owner you should always be reading.
It will help you and your business grow
If you are a business owner you know that running a business can be a monster.
This monster can take over your life and destroy everything.
It can make you bankrupt.
You can lose your family.
You can even lose your mind at times.
Which leads me to this episode book of the month
Written by Joe Berlinger, the book is called Metallica, This Monster Lives.
This book gives you behind the scenes insight into the filming of Metallica’s movie, Some Kind Of Monster.
The movie follows the band going through counseling and rehab for substance abuse after their bass player left in 2000.
If you or someone you know is suffering from alcohol or drug abuse, please get help or get them help.
It’s tough enough trying to start and run your own business when you are healthy,
If you are going to have any chance at all of finding success, you need to live a clean lifestyle.
In this book, It is really is amazing to see that such a huge band with so many resources at their finger tips,
still deals with the same issues you and I deal with in our lives.
I hope reading this book will leave you with this thought.
Whatever is bothering you in your life,
whatever difficulties you find yourself in
whether they be substance abuse, financial issues, family issues or whatever
it is important for you to talk about them.
Don’t hold it in.
It’s important for you to talk.
We all care about your well being.
If you haven’t seen the movie, go out and rent it and read this book.
I think you will find their journey to be inspirational.
In our last episode of GopherHaul, we ask the lawn care business owners viewing this show to go out into your community and help a veteran with their lawn care.
Send in your photos and we would pick a winner to receive some magenetic truck signs from amw-graphics and a lawn care business training package from summer 101.
Thanks for your submissions.
The purpose of the promotion was to teach you how to create goodwill between your business and your community.
The more goodwill you create,
the higher your business will be looked upon and thought of when your community needs lawn service.
Our business challenge winner is Lee Cathey and his staff at Tiger Time Lawn Care.
They were really up to the challenge and assisted veteran Ed Debarry.
Ed, who is a widower and no longer able to care for his property, is a veteran of WWII.
Lee said he was able to meet Ed Debarry through a friend
and was able to cut Ed’s lawn and redo his flower beds to create more curb appeal.
Lee sent in some great pictures.
Another interesting business item about Tiger Time Lawn Care is a they recently began experimenting with a bikini Lawn Care service.
If you remember, we had discussed another lawn care operator utilizing this marketing concept in a previous GopherHaul episode.
Seeing Lee’s staff wear a bikini as they mow lawns has really gotten people to talk about his business and it is growing by leaps and bounds.
Will these marketing gimmicks last?
Who knows, business is all about experimentation.
Sometimes such outrageous marketing concepts can really bring a lot of attention to your business and that can help push it to a new level.
Just today Lee posted on our forum that
A local radio station, Rock 103 called and asked about the bikini cut service.
Lee said he was floored.
They put him on live radio and talked about it
A lot of good promotion came from it he said
Have you thought of some wild and outrageous marketing concepts?
Have you experimented with them?
If you have, send us some pictures of what you did.
If you haven’t, what are you waiting for?
Try them out today!
Congratulations again to Lee and his staff.
I look forwards to seeing your pictures with your new truck signs.
Next up is Flyer distribution.
How often are you trying to come up with a way to drive through your neighborhood
and distribute your flyers as fast as possible?
Have you come up with some crazy ideas on how to do it?
Well, we have seen the best way to do it is usually the most time consuming.
That is going door to door and meeting people as you hand out your flyers.
If you are not going to do that and you don’t want to mail your flyers,
Please what ever you do, don’t do this.
Here is a flyer that was thrown from a passing truck.
It is enclosed in a sandwhich bag and weighted down with some small stones.
When we were talking about this on the forum, the point that came up is how mad it makes people.
Home owners consider this littering and not very earth friendly.
If you get your potential customers mad at you, they are not going to call you for service.
If you insist on throwing flyers out of your truck as you drive down the street
how about stapling a small bag of grass seed to it?
It’s a unique marketing concept and the grass seed is a free gift from you to help the homeowner grow grass on bare spots.
If you need a free flyer template visit our site at www.gophersoftware.com and click on the flyer link at the top of the page.
The next big thing in lawn care is quiet.
Have you heard of whispercut?
Check out there site at whispercut.com
The company was started by Richard Evans who once worked at a hedge fund in Delray Beach, Fl.
On his weekends, he looked forward to sleeping in on the weekends. But every Saturday morning, the sound of neighborhood cutting crews woke him up like a blaring alarm clock.
The screeches of leaf blowers drove him out of bed an hour after sunrise.
One Saturday, he decided to do something about all the noise.
He started Whispercut.
A lawn care service that “quietly runs on the sun.”
Electric powered equipment.
A new wave of electric powered lawn care equipment is on it’s way.
Check out this video our friend jon from Global Neighbor Inc sent us.
Jon and his company have been featured in many national publications.
Remember, if you have an idea for a product, why not experiment and bring the idea to life?
Now let’s check out his product.
When you are trying to come up with a marketing angle that will help you stand out from competitors
why not consider electric powered equipment.
It’s quiet and it’s earth friendly.
Can you imagine how much you could work that angle to gain customers?
You could become a local hero in your town by being the first to do this.
Next up - here is a section we call “Ask Team Gopher”
A question came in from our forum member Darrin .
He wrote, you said “If your business could use a GopherHaul, please email us.” so, I’m contacting you.
I have seen your flyers and such on your web site/forum.
I have been in the business part time since 2005.
I made my own flyers based on what I saw on those web sites.
The first year I had 8 customers, This year I spent $3,300 on new equipment and repairs and advertising.
Put out about 1500 flyers so far this year (I’ll include them) and only got about 3 calls.
I really need help BUT, I don’t think I can afford it.
Anything you guys can do would be greatly appreciated.
The “free lawn service 4″ flyer was put out once, about 200 of them in one area, I got 2 calls, no jobs.
The coupon flyer was put out in another area at about 100, no calls.
Purrfection flyer 4 has been put out at about 1000 houses, 1 call.
As you can see by the numbers, something is wrong, VERY wrong.
I did not expect any jobs out of the flyers but, more than 2 calls would have been nice.
Thanks in advance
Here is my take.
First off I really like what you are doing.
I think your flyers are creative and being creative is a good thing.
Since you said you aren’t getting a good response,
I think I would get rid of having the customer need to sign a contract.
That might be scaring people away.
When you are just getting your lawn care business started,
you really want to put as few barriers between you and your potential customer, as possible.
Don’t make them jump through hoops.
Keep things simple until you start getting a feel for what your customers want
Then experiment with different marketing elements to see what works and what doesn’t.
Above and beyond all that, think about,
What else are you doing to network?
Flyers are a just a part in your marketing campaign.
What else are you doing to build buzz?
Are you handing out business cards to everyone you know?
Are you talking with your neighbors?
Are you using community bulletin boards in local stores?
Are you doing anything to get media attention in your area?
Performing good deeds to others is a great way to accomplish this.
Do you have truck or trailer signs?
Another important step in flyer distribution is are you simply putting the flyer in the home owners door
or are you knocking first and talking to the homeowner?
Our Forum member “Littles” pointed this out and said
He knocked on about 200 doors and left business cards with the people that answered,
He left the business card at the door if no one answered.
Of the 200 doors he knocked on,
he got about 10 customers.
It took about 2 weeks for all the calls to come in.
Darrin then replied he wasn’t knocking on doors
What have we learned from this, knocking on doors and talking to home owners
is a very important step
don’t forget to do this.
Around the time Darrin wrote us, a friend emailed a very simple lawn care flyer to us.
In the email he said he signed up with this particular lawn care operator.
The flyer is painfully simple.
At the top it says MOWING,
followed by edging and blowing, free estimates
and the name and phone number of the lawn care operator.
As the lawn care operator was servicing this lawn,
a neighbor walked over and asked him to mow his lawn too.
Two clients were landed in that one day!
Now that is keeping it simple.
When you are just getting started, keep your marketing simple.
If you need more suggestions download our free e-book, be a lawn care business rebel from gophergraphics.com.
Also if you need business advice, please either post your question on our forum
or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Do you need more viewers to your site? Post our show on your forum, blog, or website and we will promote it in a future gopherhaul episode
GopherHaul audio version is now available for FREE through Apple’s iTunes.
We are also on myspace at www.myspace.com/teamgopher.
If you are on there as well, send us a friend request!
I’d like to send a thanks out to Lee for promoting our GopherHaul show on his site at
Can you help us promote our show?
Post our show on your site or forum and we will promote your site in a future show.
Send to email@example.com
Download our new free lawn care business book - Be a Lawn Care Business Rebel
Lastly don’t re-create the wheel, use the lawn care business software, professional lawn care business owners have been using for the past decade.
Gopher Billing & Scheduling Software will help you schedule your jobs and get your bills out on time. You will be amazed how much easier the right tool can help your business grow.
We offer great add on modules as well. Such as the Gopher Palm Software and Barcode reader. Did you know Gopher also links with Quickbooks?
With our software currently on sale starting at just $99.95 and a free 30 day trial download, we make it easy for you to take the hassle out of billing and scheduling.
Visit www.getgopher.com for your free download.
There are also free lawn care contracts, flyer, door hanger and web templates all ready to download as well.
Thanks everyone for watching the show.
Keep learning and keep making your dreams come true.
Remember always to dream it, build it, Gopher It!
Check out http://www.gophersoftware.com for more information and download the free trial of our lawn care business software.
Also check out our FREE lawn care / landscaping / landscaper business contracts, door hanger, flyer and web templates available for free download at http://www.gophergraphics.com